Mary-Claire WilsonIntegrative psychotherapist
I'm a highly experienced therapist working in private practice, having completed my MA/Advanced Diploma in Integrative Counselling and Psychotherapy, and Post-Graduate Diploma in Integrative Counselling, at one of the leading Integrative training institutions in the UK and Europe. I've voulnteered at the East London Mental Health Service (previously MIND), an organisation offering short-term counselling to the local community, as part of my commitment to inclusion, meaning I work with and welcome clients from diverse backgrounds. I've also volunteered at Highbury Counselling Centre, offering long-term counselling to anyone who can assess the service. My first MA was in English Language and Literature at Oxford University. I've previously worked in the fields of journalism, art and creative writing.
Counselling and Therapy
You may be considering counselling or therapy, either for the first time, or to continue the lifelong journey of self-exploration and development.You may be in crisis or suffering long-term distress.You may feel stuck in some areas, with the same patterns repeating themselves again and again, or have painful feelings related to difficult experiences in the past. Perhaps you hope to make changes in your life, to feel more fulfilled and balanced, with richer, more rewarding relationships with yourself and the people around you. Therapy can help with this, as we work together to make sense of your experience, identify difficulties, and explore your inner and outer resources. An exploratory meeting to discuss your needs may help you decide.
I tend to work in an open-ended, long-term way. Sometimes twice weekly is appropriate. Areas I can help with include anxiety, depression, panic attacks, low self-esteem, self-harm, relationship issues, intimacy issues, addictions, loss and bereavement, eating disorders, anger management, phobias, insomnia, life transitions, existential concerns such as loss of meaning, sexuality, gender and trauma. Nothing shocks me and I don't judge. Please enquire if you you want to discuss further whether I can help in a particular area.
Often the word 'therapy' is used whether you're seeking counselling or psychotherapy. Counselling generally addresses a current or specific concern, such as work issues or relationship difficulties. We'd meet weekly for an agreed period. The process is still one of relating, careful listening and dialogue. Psychotherapy involves meeting weekly or more often, in a long-term or open ended way. It explores the tapestry of your life from childhood onwards, and looks deeply within to uncover unconscious patterns and inner conflicts. This is a challenging, rich and enlightening journey. The distinction between counselling and therapy is not always clear, as brief in-depth work is possible.
How I Work
I provide a warm and confidential space to support you in finding your own way. Sometimes a chance to voice what's going on for you can offer relief. In the safe space we'll create together, we can reflect on any issues you might have, any difficult feelings, and any unwanted thoughts. We can also discover, affirm and celebrate your talents, achievements and strengths, as we travel the road to insight, growth and compassion. The aim is to find meaning and the capacity to live a fuller life.
There are no guarantees as to what will result from therapy. It can be an enlightening and challenging journey, introducing a range of new perspectives and possibilities, interrogating some of your assumptions, beliefs and behaviours. New ways of being can be daring and demanding for you, and for those around you. Please be aware that insight and change can be unsettling processes as well as desired outcomes. Some patience and bravery may be required from you, through which I'll support you to the best of my ability.
As an Integrative therapist, I'm trained in a range of modalities, so I tailor my approach to meet your needs. I'm informed by several theoretical traditions, including humanistic, psychodynamic, cognitive-behavioural, developmental, transpersonal and body oriented therapy. Working with the body, I use techniques such as mindfulness, sensing, breathing and grounding. Monitoring our embodied states is particularly important, as emotions are physiological events, created, felt and regulated through the body.
I'm a relational therapist, which means our real relationship, and its exploration, will be part of our work. How you and I relate may mirror how you relate to others in your life. This can be a significant area of inquiry. Relational work also means I see us as two people in the room, not one 'patient' and one 'expert.' I intend to be open, honest and curious when I reflect with you. If i get it wrong, I'll be honest about that too, and see how we can learn and grow from it, as often this situation presents an opportunity for more intimacy between us. As a wise friend once said to me, I've learnt so much from my mistakes that I'm planning on making some more!
I don't take the 'blank screen' approach, meaning I don't stare at you in silence. If I don't share my thoughts with you, the therapy is only taking place in my head. I provide a non-judgemental and loving space, where I value you for the unique individual you are. This kind of environment can be rare to find and powerful to experience.
The authentic relationship between us is at the heart of my practice. Genuine empathy, warmth and humour enable us to make soul connections. I've experienced in my own personal therapy the power of authentic and enabling relationships. I've faced my own life challenges, and I found compassion, care, support, creativity and challenge in my relationships with my therapists. I aim to provide the same.
I believe we all have the capacity for transformation, and that this is a gift we're offered throughout our lives. All we need to do is become able to receive it. We're often stronger than we realise and have more than we know. We have riches that include our breath, our bodies and the sky above us. All we need to do is look deeply inside, to find our authentic selves, and look up, to see that we are part of something bigger than us.
What to Expect in the First Session
Please note I'm not currently seeing new clients in person.
Here we'd explore, with your permission, what's brought you to therapy, what you hope for, and address any questions you might have for me. This is a chance to see if we're suited to work together. There's no obligation attached to this meeting.
You can contact me via welldoing.org, or email me at [email protected], or call/text me on 07535316547 (calls are likely to go to voicemail; I'd then get in touch to arrange a mutually convenient time to talk). I aim to respond within 48 hours. I keep information provided strictly confidential.
OnlineI also provide my services online.
Issues often worked with
Types of therapy
I offer a free 15 minute phone consultation and an initial meeting at a reduced rate of £50 for individuals, £60 for couples.
Weekly counselling and therapy sessions for individuals are £70 per session. Couples are £90 per session. I don't currently have any concessionary places available.